When will we see "Calvacade of Stars" and Pert Kelton as "Alice Kramden?"

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by buttmunker, Aug 7, 2008.

  1. buttmunker

    buttmunker Second Unit

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    There is such a wealth of Jackie Gleason material not available on DVD, and I don't just mean his stint as Ralph Kramden on "The Honeymooners".

    In 1951 or so, Gleason hosted a variety show called "Calvacade of Stars", and some of his sketch comedy included characters like Reginald Van Gleason III and Poor Soul, and I would love, love, love to see these programs!

    Also would love to see Pert Kelton as Alice Kramden - the "lost" episodes only feature Audrey Meadows, and I've never seen any with Kelton (except on YouTube).

    A) what's the hold-up on releasing this early Gleason stuff?
    B) when will we get it?
     
  2. Bob Hug

    Bob Hug Screenwriter

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    "Cavalcade of Stars" was a DuMont Network presentation and, unfortunately, much of that network's programming is lost. However, the UCLA Film & TV Archive has some episodes, descriptions of which can be seen here (Click on each title for more complete description):

    UCLA Library Catalog - Titles

    I'm not sure who has the copyrights on these episodes (or even if they were ever renewed), but UCLA has released a couple of their holdings on DVD, "Mister Peepers" through S'more Entertainment and "Man with a Camera" through the Infinity Entertainment Group.
     
  3. Mark Y

    Mark Y Supporting Actor

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    Some DuMont Gleason material surfaced some time in the 1990s in the form of three compilation specials hosted by Paul Reiser. The Really Lost Debut Episodes did in fact include the very first Honeymooners skit, in which Art Carney appears as a cop rather than as Ed Norton. Another special featured a Christmas Honeymooners skit, and a third was called Jackie Gleason's Cavalcade Of Characters and showcased his other characters.

    I don't remember whose name was on these, whether they were from Gleason's own stash or some other source...as far as copyrights, I would guess these are likely to be public domain, no? (Not the Disney Channel specials, but the original shows.)
     
  4. Kevin Segura

    Kevin Segura Stunt Coordinator

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    No, not public domain. Unpublished works, originally subject to New York common law (rather than federal) copyright. Term of copyright is most likely 120 years from the date of creation [live broadcast].

    For an example of how that system works, please see:

    Showcase Productions

    -Kevin
     
  5. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    Better yet, why hasn't the 1956-57 Honeymooners musical "Trip to Europe" episodes been released yet? They have NEVER been syndicated or released on DVD, though the 1960s color remakes have! What gives?
     
  6. Garysb

    Garysb Screenwriter

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    Or the adaption episode from the 60's which was the last time Audrey Meadows played Alice before Shelia McCrea took over. Meadows came back when ABC had some specials. This was the last B&W episode and was later remade.
     
  7. Michael Rogers

    Michael Rogers Supporting Actor

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    I too would love to see this Gleason stuff that i know is out there.
     
  8. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    We might as well add the ABC specials to the want list, too! Interesting how the Kramdens and Nortons spent the years on all the big networks of the era except NBC!
     

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